Northern Wilds Magazine
Along the Shore

Pow Wow Trail volunteers paint Isabella guest cabin

ISABELLA—Over the weekend of June 26-28, Boundary Waters Advisory Committee volunteers led by retired 3M employees Doug Rude and Lynn Schwartz donated materials, paint and their time to repaint a guest cabin behind the Stony River Café. The idea was born last year when one of the members stayed at the cabin and noticed peeling paint.

“It looked like a lot of hardship for Tom and Liz Pearson, and this is one way we can help the community affected by the fire,“ said Martin Kubik, BWAC president.

The Pagami Creek Fire of 2011 was put down four years ago at a cost of $22 million dollars. A Federal study indicates that the economic loss to communities affected by fire is 10 times the cost of fire suppression. For the Ely/Isabella area, the fire caused a drop in customers.

Now that the cabin is painted, BWAC is going a step further and offering a five dollar food rebate with the hope of attracting new customers to the historic Stony River Café. Rebate rules and details are listed online at

BWAC volunteers plan to repaint the Stony River Café this fall. |SUBMITTED
BWAC volunteers plan to repaint the Stony River Café this fall. |SUBMITTED

In nearby Cook County, hiking is the number one reason why people visit Grand Marais and the surrounding area. “The BWAC hopes some of the Stony River Café customers will venture on the Pow Wow Trail and discover the resilient nature in the BWCA Wilderness. The US Forest Service and BWAC volunteers have done significant restoration on the Pow Wow Trail this year, but much more work remains to be done.

“We want to help preserve these treasures, whether it is the experience of eating at the historic Stony River Café or hiking on the Pow Wow Trail where the jack pines are emerging, green and strong,” said Kubik.

The club members plan to come back in the fall to paint the Stony River Café. The job will be about three times larger and require more volunteers.

The BWAC was established in 2002 to advocate for hiking trails and special places in the BWCAW. Its current focus is restoring the 32-mile Pow Wow Trail which burned in the Pagami Creek Fire in 2011. For more information contact Martin Kubik, or by phone (651)214-5849 or Tom Pearson at Stony River Café at (218)323-7650.

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